WHILDEN’S POND 1 © 2002Big Cypress Gallery
We named our backyard pond Whilden’s Pond in honor of the man who owned the property before us, Leon Whilden. He was a hermit who lived in Big Cypress and turned the property into an orchid and exotic plant nursery. During the winter, so many birds spend time in our pond that it’s like having the Discovery Channel right outside the swamp cottage window! Watching all of the birds made me long to photograph them; however, capturing them with a large format camera is nearly impossible because of the slow shutter speeds. Generally, animals don’t wait around to have their photo taken. I resolved my dilemma by using Niki’s 6×7 Pentax camera with a 1200mm lens. I was working downstairs when I looked outside and saw a beautiful egret standing majestically on a log in our pond. I ran upstairs to where I had Niki’s camera all set up and waiting, then very slowly opened the window so I wouldn’t scare the bird, and took the photograph. So, I tell folks that my bird photography is done in the comfort of my own air-conditioned home…I just open the window and take the photograph! This photograph is hand-printed in Clyde’s darkroom on fiber-based paper, selenium toned, then mounted and matted to current archival standards. The photograph is a limited edition and signed by Clyde. Disclaimer – Cropping, contrast, and image density may vary. To learn more about the darkroom printing process, click here.